We're teaming up with RedDoor author Penny Batchelor to ask literary festival organisers to make accessibility a key factor in their planning.
#KeepFestivalsHybrid is a campaign to encourage event organisers in the publishing world to prioritise accessibility by running events both in-person and online.
Online events enable disabled authors who are unable to travel to promote their work on a level playing field with other writers. They also widen participation to include readers who can't afford to pay travel costs on top of the ticket price or who may have been put off attending in person events by social anxiety or simply the thought that the literary world was not open to them.
In 2020, the pandemic saw the publishing world embrace online events. This had an immediate and profound effect on the way that disabled people and those with chronic illnesses could engage with literary festivals and other events for writers and readers. Suddenly it became possible for people in this group to participate in and enjoy literary activities in a way that they had been precluded from until now.
This level playing field is now under threat as pandemic restrictions loosen and literary festivals begin to return to their pre-Covid business model.
Sign the open letter
We've written an open letter to literary festival organisers, asking them to (where possible) offer both in-person and online tickets for literary events.
Add your signature here: https://bit.ly/3bU4bso
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